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Full text of "A history of Persia"

35o                  HISTORY OF PERSIA                 CHAP.
years previously killed their governor, and Nadir had
invaded their country, which is described in the
Jahangusha as follows : " If the pen of description wished
to give an idea of the route, so steep and so difficult, it
would be lost in the forest of astonishment and con-
founded in the desert of feebleness/' On that occasion
the savage Bakhtiaris, unable to resist the overwhelming
forces employed, had submitted, and by way of punish-
ment three thousand families had been transported to
Khorasan. On the present occasion Nadir attacked
another rebellious section of the tribe and led his troops
into every corner and nook of the mountains. Probably
realizing that the Bakhtiaris were driven to rob through
poverty, as is the case to-day with the tribes on the north-
west frontier of India, Nadir, after killing their chief and
other prisoners, gave them better lands in a less in-
accessible district. He also enrolled a body of their
warriors in his army, a statesmanlike policy which proved
conspicuously 'successful.
The Afghan Campaign^ A.M. 1150-1151 (1737-1738),
 Kandahar was governed by Husayn, brother of
Mahmud the Captor of Isfahan. Being quite unable to
meet Nadir's army of eighty thousand men in the field, he
shut himself up in the city, which was strongly fortified,
fully provisioned, and held by a large garrison. Nadir
Shah, after reconnoitring the position, came to the con-
clusion that it was too strong to besiege without heavy
guns, and decided on a blockade. This operation he
carried out with great thoroughness. Round the city a
line of towers was constructed, twenty-eight miles in
circumference, and in these infantry armed with muskets
were stationed, so that Kandahar was effectually cut off
from the surrounding country. But the city held out for
a year, and Nadir then resolved to take more active steps.
Kandahar stands on the face of a hill, and was defended
by a wall and by a number of towers which constituted
outworks. The besiegers made themselves masters of
some of these towers, to which with immense difficulty they
dragged up guns, the Bakhtiaris earning special distinction
by capturing a large tower which was the key of -the